Boatwif Blog

0

Back to the canals

Cleddau had been climbing steadily since leaving Peterborough on 27th August. Peterborough is judged as 10 feet above sea level and Gayton, where Cleddau has paused for an engine service, is 300 feet. A lot of feet and a lot of locks then… Monday was the day for a serious climb. There was an early departure from a mooring overlooked by the University of Northampton, then on past the Carlsberg Brewery      and back onto Canal and River Trust waters. ...

0

Bridges, boats, trains – and reeds

What are the characteristics of the Nen (as in hen and men, spelt Nene) between Thrapston and Northampton, a distance of some 26 miles and 22 locks… Well, there are bridges (rail and road), locks, chalet and caravan parks – and weedy, reedy waters… After a quick morning visit to Thrapston on Tuesday (see previous post ) the boats left the Sailing Club moorings, passed easily under the new (and higher) footbridge    and rose through Islip Lock. The upstream...

3

Never presume…

Along the Nene (rhyming with preen and mean) from Oundle to Thrapston, 8½ miles, 4 locks So what of Oundle then?    This extremely good-looking Northamptonshire town was previously investigated in June 2014. Then, as now, it exuded wealth and a sense of ‘county class’.  It was a mile or so short of Oundle on Thursday that this structure was passed.     It was a yurt – a yoga yurt. Inside two lithe young women were stretching and posing –...

0

 Upstream strategy

Wet, wet, wet it was, when Cleddau and Tentatrice left Peterborough on Sunday morning. What strategy would bring likely success? The target was overnight moorings at Ferry Meadow Lake (only two pontoons, mooring allowed for 24 hours only). En route the water tanks needed replenishment (would there be a boat queue at the water tap?) and supplies needed replenishing from ASDA (would the railings beside the store be free of other boats…?) From their mooring nearer the water point the...

0

Sky high!

In a flat landscape any vertical structure is pretty prominent. Whittlesey, a small market town, is 6 miles east of Peterborough. From the moorings beside the park (just above Ashline Lock) the tall tower and spire of St Mary’s Church is very noticeable.     Currently the church has scaffolding around the base of the spire but there was no peek inside as (on Wednesday afternoon) all doors to the church were locked. On Thursday morning Cleddau, closely followed by Tentatrice,   ...

0

From east to west…

After the trip along the Relief Channel it was back to Denver.     Here the boats and boaters would need to wait for suitable water depth to transit from the non-tidal Ouse down a tidal river stretch and lock up onto the Middle Levels. Denver is a superb place to play a waiting game. There is wide water with plenty of mooring space on both sides.     You feel you can breathe deeply here as there is so much open...

0

What a Relief…

From the narrow twisty River Wissey     – to the broad man-made Relief Channel.  On Saturday Tentatrice and Cleddau left their Wissey moorings, cruised the short distance further north to Denver – and bore right at the Denver Sailing Club to access the Relief Channel Navigation.  After the devastating North Sea floods that overwhelmed many East Coast communities in 1953 improvements to river flood banks were made and new infrastructure was constructed to prevent a recurrence of flooding on such...

0

Sweet Wissey

The River Wissey is another so far unexplored East Anglian river. Like the Lark  and Brandon Creek  the Wissey feeds into the Great Ouse. “While we’re here shall we explore the little rivers?” the Tentatrice First Mate had suggested.  Boatwif wouldn’t admit to a Tick List syndrome – but there is a chart on her computer of waterways so far explored – and this year the Cam, the Little Ouse and now the Wissey have been added to the “Boated”...

0

Up the Creek…

9 miles from Ely along the Great Ouse is The Ship Inn – it sits at the mouth of the Little Ouse River, often referred to as Brandon Creek.  The little convoy (Cleddau and Tentatrice) regrouped as travelling partners at Littleport on Monday morning      and set off to explore another previously unvisited East Anglian waterway.  To turn onto a river about a third of the width of the Great Ouse came as rather a shock,    especially as the...

0

Sound. Colour. Action. Bored? Never!

To be bored in Ely is to be bored with life… that was the gist of a conversation with an Ely local a few weeks ago. With this last weekend in Ely full of sound and colour, there was little chance of being bored.  Cleddau was moored alongside the Riverside Park,  a few hundred metres from Jubilee Gardens, the ‘bandstand park’. Quite early on Saturday morning the boom of a public address system, songs and a rhythmic beat indicated that...